The Union Minister for Power, Coal and Renewable Energy Shri Piyush Goyal has said that his Ministry is committed to ensuring that every household is electrified and all farmers in the country get adequate and timely power in the country.
Addressing the Conference of State Power, Energy and Renewable Energy Ministers at Goa he said making a difference to the lives of poor, rural people and farmers is important in achieving our goal of 24X7 power for all-industry, commerce, households, farmers- in the country by the year 2019. He also underlined that we are committed to cheaper adequate power in a sustainable efficient manner for the poor. He said it is easy if we work in the spirit of participation and cooperation. Shri Goyal said we learn from experiences of states and I am happy that this conference has developed into a good platform for exchange of ideas and understand each other’s problems. Laying a lot of emphasis on the North Eastern states he said unless we develop the East and north eastern states we will not be able to develop India. Commenting on the common pool purchase policy for larger equipments such as transformers, cables he hoped his Ministry will receive help from states. He said if some states feel they can do better in purchasing of equipment and machinery they are welcome however his Ministry is of the view that the centralized system with a common procurement committee is better. He expressed happiness that 2 states Karnataka and Goa are signing the UDAY agreement today.
He took pride in the fact that no states have been discriminated except preferential treatment to the North east. Reacting to the agenda items for the conference Shri Goyal said that hydro and wind energy has been neglected areas and it is important to get them on track with long term plans for growth in the deliberations. Urban areas and our cities/towns also need 24×7 power. Sharing the Gujarat experience of reduction of power thefts he said the tariff increase there had been the lowest. It is not the poor who steal and it’s the bigger power thefts which had corruption. He appealed to all states to reduce power thefts and said there is great political benefit in stopping power theft while asking support for the program being suggested in the conference for doing this.
The two day bi-annual conference has been organized by the Ministry for Power and Coal. Ministers from 19 states and Secretaries and officials from as many as 27 states are attending the conference. The Coal Secretary Shri Anil Swarup informed that from a shortage situation sometime back, his Ministry is now facing a situation, where they have coal but there are not many takers for the 550 MT coal stock. He appealed to the generating companies in the states to stop importing coal and said the matter would be discussed at the conference. He said Coal India Ltd has set up processes for auction of coal to public and private entities and a dispute resolution mechanism has also been set up in his Ministry wherein disputes between states can also be resolved. Narrating a story the Secretary MNRE Shri Upendra Tripathy underlined the importance of differential pricing especially for the poor and underprivileged class.